Even though the anatomy of the advanced posture is complex, it s straightforward and easy to analyze. In the neck, most of the structures n the cervical spine are stretched, including the posterior longitudi il ligament on the back of the anterior functional unit, the interspin- is ligaments between the spinous processes, the ligamenta flava between ie vertebral arches, and the ligamentum nuchae, a fibro-elastic ligam* which runs from the back of the head to all the spinous processes betwi n Ci and C7 (fig. 4.13a). The synovial articulations between the adjaci it superior and inferior articulating processes will be stretched to their lin s as well. Also stretched by this posture are the muscles that attach to I <e o 7he si lot LDFRSTAMU SOI
upper thoracic and cervical spine: the trapezius muscles; the levator scapulae; and the strap muscles between the head and upper back, especially the semispinalis capitis between the cranium and C7-T6, and the splenius capitis between the mastoid process and C7-T6 (figs. 4.14, 5.5, 8.12, and 8.14).
The spinous processes (figs. 4.10a, 4.10c, and 4.13a) are the first bony points of contact with the floor in the shoulderstand. They are easily located, and are the hard structures that can be palpated directly in the midline of the body at the nape of the neck. Two of them generally stand out from all the others. The higher of the two bumps belongs to C7, and the lower one belongs to Ti, which is also called the vertebra prominens because it usually protrudes more than any other (fig. 4.13a). You can confirm their identities for yourself if you find someone on whom these two bumps are pronounced, ask them to flex their neck, and then in the flexed position to twist their head right and left several times. You can distinguish C7 from Ti because C7 moves from side to side as your subject's head twists back and forth, while Ti is relatively stable. Once you see and feel the relative mobility of the tip of C7 on someone else, you can easily locate it and Ti on yourself. And once C7 and Ti are located, the tips of the spinous processes in the rest of the spine can easdy be felt, especially in those who are slender and not very muscular.
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